People Describe The Worst Field Trip They Ever Went On In School
Photo by Elijah Ekdahl on Unsplash

In February of last year, there was a story that broke about a predominantly black school taking their students to a plantation to pick cotton as part of a field trip.

Unsurprisingly this did not go over well.

One Reddit user asked:

What was the worst field trip you ever went on in school?

and hey guess what? This wasn't even the worst "bad" field trip! This was racist and gross, but nobody died. That can't be said for some of these responses.

We don't know who is in charge of field trip planning, but please stop doing crap like this.


We went to a beach where horseshoe crabs mate. Hundreds and hundreds of horseshoe crabs, latched onto one another and jizzing in the 95 degree heat.

The smell was unimaginable. I remember scraping salt/dried foam off of my shoes on the bus ride home and realizing what it actually was

Google "Delaware Bay horseshoe crab spawn" for pictures.

- StopCounting

Tourism Class

white water GIFGiphy

Worst field trip was a trip we took for tourism class. We planned to do a high wire rope course, abseiling and white water rafting.

We went white water rafting first, and the rest of the trip was cancelled after a girl drowned, several of us nearly drowned, part of the class got swept away down stream and had to be rescued while the rest of us had to pull our dead classmate out of the river and then continue down the river to the get out point, all the while suffering hypothermia due to being out there for hours trying to get our classmates body out while in soaking wet wet suits. The rest of the day was spent smoking while trying to get warm and waiting to be interviewed by the cops.

Second worst was 6 months later when our traumatized class was forced on to high speed jet boats in extremely low water levels, when none of us felt comfortable going anywhere near a boat yet. Tutors told us to suck it up, get on the boat, or we'd fail the year.

I was 18 at the time of the accident, but turned 19 that same year, and the oldest student was in his 40's. A lot of us actually didn't last the year, we dropped out. I did ask if there was any chance I could defer the rest of the year and come back to finish it the following year, but was told I'd have to pay for the full year again to complete it, so I ended up walking away from it, which promptly ended my career in tourism, but mentally I just couldn't cope.

I'd lost two other people in my life in the two days following the drowning, and my dog was put down a month or so later (I'd had her since I was 4, and I'd just turned 19) so my mental health was just non-existent. I took the following week off after it, but only because I got an exemption, everyone else had to return on the Monday, the accident happened the prior Thursday, and apparently after 1 day off talking about it they were all expected to return to normal by Tuesday.

I do kind of regret not completing the year, because it was my third and final year, but financially I couldn't afford to defer it, and mentally I couldn't keep up with the course load after everything that had happened. Save to say it wasn't the best environment to stay in, it's not that the tutors weren't nice, or that it was a toxic environment, but clearly they didn't know how to deal with that kind of trauma, let alone help their students through as best as they could.


Museum Of Work

To the museum of work. Yeah, take the 8 year old children and show them the magical and interesting world of the 8 hour workday. Brilliant idea!

- jauxerous

If it is work 8 years old are interested in like firefighters, pilots or nurses I think it is a good idea for a field trip. But probabbly it was an exhibit of office supplies.

- Saint_Schlonginus

That would have been cool! We actually visited the firestation once and it was a blast! But this museum was about the textile industry. We went around for 3 hours and looked a 150 year old sewing machines and yarn spindles. It was so boring we all lost the will to live at age 8!

- jauxerous

Fetus Jar

We went to the museum (if I recall correctly it was a Bodies exhibit, where they have actual human cadavers) and I remember two kids in my class fighting and knocking down a fetus jar. It didn't break but our teacher was so pissed she just ended our tour and argued with us all the way back to school.

- TheInfamousShart

Cow Ghosts

Slaughter house to "see how hot dogs are made". Elementary school, early 60's, Rapid City, South Dakota. Black Hills Packing was the company. No longer there. Condos or apartments there now. If cows and pigs had ghosts that place would be haunted AF.

Thing that struck me was the bolt to the head. Always assumed they used a gun to kill the animal. First time I saw No Country For Old Men I knew right away what that device was.

- Schid1953


My sister watched her friend suffocate and die in a pile of salt on a school trip to the salt processing plant. They let the kids climb on the mountains of salt and she hit a hollow spot and just fell in. Salt closed over her and they couldn't pull her out in time.

"How was the field trip!?"

"My friend died."

I think they were in 5th grade? I think about that poor girl a lot.

- alicedeelite

Well, I Googled it and found this article...

Russell and several other students were climbing on a 30-foot salt mound when a conveyor belt activated and apparently opened up an air pocket under the mound.

They let kids play on a salt mound while it was being processed? WTF? I hope those parents sued the hell out of the salt company.

- tweakingforjesus

Moon Moon

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We visited a rainforest at night. It was actually really cool, but I had recently lost weight due to a bad case of pneumonia, so my pants were loose.

I bent over to pick up my backpack and accidentally flashed everyone in the middle of a forest under a full moon. Someone pointed out my round, pale ass perfectly matched the moon and I was called Moon Moon for the rest of the year.

- manlikerealities

Funeral Home

We went to a funeral home in elementary school. One kid passed out as the nice old creepy AF guy explained the embalming process as we all stood around the embalming table. I think it was the line "...and the blood runs down these gutters on the sides of the table" that put the kid over the edge.

I went to a catholic school run by nuns. One of those crazy old penguins came up with the idea.

- dpcaxx

My class did a funeral home trip too! The guy giving us the tour told us how he broke the door frame when he first started because the body moved and he couldn't get the f out fast enough.

And a guy I tangentially knew had recently died in a car wreck so I wondered if he'd been embalmed on that table.

- formynexttrickanvils

The Worst Pep Rally

In middle school we went to Colonial Williamsburg and the tour guide asked us questions like "who did all the work?" "Who was out in the fields?"

And had us chant "slaves!" Like it was some sort of pep rally. Very odd

- cloudsandlightning

I was at the civil rights museum in Memphis and a class had just started their tour in the lobby. The tour guide said "What's special about this museum built into a hotel?" And some of the kids were like "Martin Luther King was shot here!! :D" they sounded so excited lol

- MarchKick

In eighth grade we went to this living history museum where everything was an American town in the 1800s. We literally had to pretend to be slaves escaping on the Underground Railroad while a "crazy guy" chased us with a rifle shooting blanks and were saved by an "old white quaker couple." My school was almost entirely white (maybe 30 poc, 10 of which were maybe bipoc, out of 300 in the class). I guess not a single person thought how poor taste this actually was...

We all look back at it now like wtf

- thrivingbutnotreally

Ending Your Career Before It Begins

Army academy. I wanted to be a soldier, had a solid career path wherein I was going to Nursing school first and then become an Army medic. Plus side is if you enlist with a degree you immediately become a ranked officer. So yeah, get in, learn all about it, then they tell me I was too short to enlist. I stopped growing at 4'11", and minimum height requirement was 5'2" then.

I cried on the way home.

- pinkballoffluff

Whomp Whomp

jimmy fallon no GIF by The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy FallonGiphy

Trip to a fort. We had a look from the bus since they wouldn't allow us in and went back to school.


Feeding Times

Had the opportunity to do an overnight stay at a zoo once as a class trip, which included seeing all the animals after hours, feeding times, and getting to go into some of the enclosures to feed certain animals. Unfortunately only two of us voted for that option, everyone else voted to go see Jurassic Park 2 at the movies.

I'm still bummed about not going to the zoo 25 years later.


Dull River

We went to the canoe museum. You know what is NOT fascinating? Canoes.



I enjoy our canoe museum (granted I first went as an adult) just because I liked the history of the country that they presented, canoes themselves I could give two hoots about. (lol sorry, as I was thinking of what I write that came up and made me laugh).



We went to a community college. That was pretty fun, but it was a girls only field trip, so the poor boys were stuck listening to speeches about becoming a man.


Now listen here boys you don't need no fancy pants education what y'all need is to be MANLY.


Locked Up

My girl scout troupe went to the police station. It wasn't initially terrible, but they locked us in a cell and took pictures while the cell next to us actually had a lady that was arrested earlier. We heard a lot of curse words that day, I have a faint memory of her peeing herself as well.


I'm Gonna Blow....

We went to the fire station in first grade. We were getting back on the bus and as I was going up the steps to board the bus, the kid in front of me turned around and vomited all over me. My hair, my face, the front of my shirt, my shoes: covered in vomit. Had to spend the rest of the day at school and the walk home in vomit hair and clothes.


A "Normal" Day

Can tell you the worst field trip that I didn't go on. In 5th grade we were supposed to go see some circus thing. It was September 11, 2001.


I was actually on a field trip that day when one of my teachers got a call on her cell phone, which stuck out in my head because cell phones were so rare at the time. I remember her being upset and talking to some other teachers in hushed voices, but the field trip continued as normal.


In November?

My school had the bright idea to do a camping trip in November in Canada. Everyone spent the whole time in their tent trying to stay warm.


To the Pink Palace

I went to Memphis for an overnight trip in 5th grade. I caught a fever the night we got there and was deathly ill the entirety of the next day. I remember going to the Pink Palace and sitting on every single bench with my friends, waiting for everyone else to get through the exhibit. After that we went to a stop on the Underground Railroad where I almost certainly got my first migraine. Finally, on the bus home, I vomited all over one of the chaperones and the bus floor.


by myself....

Six flags. All everyone wanted to do was shop and didn't want to ride any rides, so I rode them all by myself and nobody even realized I was gone. Just get there early, go on rides, eat, then maybe have a look around the shops before hopping on the rides again.

But don't spend all day shopping ffs. Everyone I've ever gone with has done that crap, so I just started going by myself. Thing is, it sucks doing things like that by yourself.


Just Why?

When I was 10 we went to a Bunnings Warehouse. To this day I don't know why they decided to bring school kids to a hardware store.


Schools take young kids to stores and I don't get it. Like why the he'll would you want to drive all the way out to a Petsmart for a field trip?



Phillipa Soo Disney GIF by Hamilton: An American MusicalGiphy

In sixth grade our entire middle school went to a high school play. It was so boring that one of our teachers fell asleep.


Prayer Trip

In 7th grade we went to see a nunnery. It was 3 hours of only praying and 20 minutes explaining why the nunnery existed. Most boring day of my life.


"If you're happy and you know it it's a sin!"


No Love Boat

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Was supposed to be on luxury cruise around the harbor. The captain of the vessel never showed.


Into the Storm

In the first grade we went to the harbor and were supposed to learn about boats I think? The weekend before the trip a whole HURRICANE came through and destroyed the entire boardwalk. We still went. The outer edge of the hurricane was still scudding over, everything was muddy and destroyed. Then we went to a museum about duck decoys. Which are cool examples of folk art and all, but they did absolutely nothing for a seven year old.

I'd also like to nominate my being left behind in a darkened room of the Natural History Museum in DC. I think it was a dinosaur display? It was so, so terrifying. The second time I was left behind (Air and Space Museum) I was just like "ah crap, here we go again."


Behind Bars....

In elementary school, we took a field trip to prison. I don't remember much, but it was very boring and we did a lot of walking. I do for whatever reason, remember my teacher saying "it always breaks my heart whenever I see one of my previous students here". I also remember some kids were actually scared to even be there. Not sure who thought it was a good idea but I'd rate it a 3/10.


Sad Truth

The holocaust museum. We were in 4th grade and half of the kids didn't even know what a holocaust was.


Last year, my 8 year old cousin and his class went to a human rights museum with a big Holocaust section and it traumatized the f**k out of him. His parents had to reassure him that he wasn't going to be murdered for being Jewish for a month or two after.


Left Behind

See U GIF by swerkGiphy

When I was in 6th grade, we made a trip to a hospital, on bicycles. Mine got a problem and I got left behind. One of the worst memories of my childhood.



Rice farm. We had to help with transplanting the rice seedlings. Part of community service and volunteer initiative.

It started raining. A crab bit my little toe. Fell into the mud. The lunch college provided was dry. Got a cold.

But it was still pretty interesting. Especially the mud fight.



Freshman year of high school, a number of us toured ASU (Arizona State University). A bunch of us got lost due to highly conflicting information, which ended up involving Tempe Police, a bunch of parents, and a teacher being suspended (he resigned a few days later).


Scrambled Trip

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An egg processing plant in first grade. It was just watching eggs go down a conveyer belt through a factory. Yawn.



Trip to the Zoo.... I've never been to the Zoo before and I've always wanted to go and see a lion. I was so excited. We get there and they said the lion was sick or some crap and I said can I go to the back and see him for just a second. Please, I've never seen one and my teacher said no. Kids who I thought were my friends were laughing at me and one of them said get a book and look at one. Smh.


"mudball monster"

A sewage treatment plant. We got to see how our own toilet water became clean enough to send to the ocean.


All I remember from ours is they showed what they called a "mudball monster", collection of iron & dirt deposits from a clogged drain that had developed to look like a sea urchin that looked like its 'tentacles' were moving when it floated in the jar.


Domino's Next?

Winning Pizza Hut GIF by SportsManiasGiphy

Walked to Pizza Hut and crushed it as a part time student Chef.


Get Out! 

We drove 2 and a half hours to a theme park, only for it to be evacuated 10 minutes after we got there due to a bomb threat.


Supermarket Sweep

When I student taught, one of the science teachers took her class on an impromptu field trip to the grocery store. Somehow the class started discussing diet coke and mentos. So the teacher decided what the hell, they're going to walk a block to the grocery store to pick up supplies for said experiment.


Through the Island

School trip to Ellis island before it was restored in the 90s. It was the middle of winter we were so cold kids were crying. The holes in ceilings and walls had freezing rain pouring through them. Utter misery.

When I relayed the story to a very old neighbor who actually went through Ellis island, in winter, as a child she said she had the same experience as I had... even leaky holes in the ceiling, except for her it was, "the best day of my life."


Coked Up

Probably the Coca-Cola factory in Elizabethtown, KY. I think they had a museum too. Got some free coke at least.


All but Me

Barf boat. Our seventh and eighth grade classes went whale watching. As soon as the boat pulled away from the dock kids started barfing from motion sickness. Three hours and Everyone got sick except me. There was vomit everywhere.


Thanks, MP.

Overnight hike/camping trip, divided into four groups for some reason. I was in the last group.

I got hypothermia because my group got lost and it was raining, and while everyone was soaked apparently my body decided it should die first.

We didn't go to the hospital, or even a doctor- no nurse visit when we went back to school the next day either. slept in a van with no food, didn't have breakfast because mom sent me with no money for it, and I was blamed for why the school wouldn't let outside overnights happen again for a few years.

Thanks, MP.


I Had to GO! 

I went to a pioneer village type place in third grade. I ended up peeing my pants because I couldn't find a bathroom in time. It turned out okay because my much older friend (who was in the class with me) pretended that he peed HIS pants too just to make me feel less alone.

Then some old lady made a joke I didn't understand and we left.

Not a great day.



bowling fail GIFGiphy

In 1st grade the school decided to take us to our local bowling alley. One kid was laying down on the ground and got hit with a bowling ball straight to the head. He was sent to the hospital and the field trip was cancelled. He became my best friend in 3rd grade and we've been best friends ever since. We both just graduated high school this year.


Standing Only

When we graduated my entire class was supposed to go to Disneyland on 4 busses.

Half way there, one of the busses breaks down. They did not account for the possibility of needing extra seats.

I spent a good 8 hours sitting criss cross on a bus floor, with about 30 other kids also crammed onto the floor. People were triple seated, it was screwed.


Critical Missing

The field trip was fine but what happened afterward was one of the worst things to happen in hindsight. I was 10 years old when this took place. Went to a fort in elementary school, and I had just transferred to a new school. There were lots of schools there that day, and I happened to see my old friends. Broke away from my group to be with them instead. At the end of the day I ended up getting on their bus without thinking, and my old school at the end of the day would drop kids off to an after school center first then take the others home.

Now I don't know why attendance wasn't taken or anything, but I got off with my best friend at a YMCA type place. They took account for the children there, and asked me why I was there because I was not on their roster. I said I was with my friend and they then asked if my parents knew, and I answered no. Well turns out that an hour later a missing child report would go up on the local news channel with my photo.

The staff at the center immediately called the police to tell them where I was. I was picked up by police and taken back to my school. Where my parents were going crazy at the fact that my teacher had lost me and didn't realize it until my babysitter who normally picked me up had asked where I was. Not comprehending the gravity of the situation at the time, I didn't know what the big deal was. Now though, I realize how bad it was. I got into hella trouble with both my parents and the school. And I wasn't allowed to go on any other field trips for the rest of the school year.


Age Limit

Went to a play for 6-10 year olds when we were 15/16.

Teachers saw their mistake after though and we all got ice cream and some time to walk around the Christmas market in little groups.



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I remember going to The Queen Mary in Long Beach in 4th or 5th grade and volunteering to bite into an onion when no one else would when the "pirates" were telling us about scurvy.



I go to an alternative high school, and every month or so, we go on "Leaving to Learns". One time, my class went to a local robotics place. It was pretty decent, but the employee that was giving the tour looked down at my stomach right as she said "large". Later that same day, I volunteered to help rake an elderly couple's yard with some classmates from another grade. Before we raked the yard however, the couple treated us to lunch (warmed-up canned chili and hot dogs). Guess who got a way bigger bowl of chili than everyone else? The universe was telling me to lose some damn weight that day. Anyways, the elderly couple were really nice, but very "country" and very religious. Before we ate, we had to do a prayer circle. While we were eating, they were playing a harmonica cover of "Amazing Grace". When we were done, they gave us each "letters from God". I never thought I'd see my fellow foul-mouthed, weed and vape smoking classmates in a freaking prayer circle, it was hilarious.


The Border 

I'm a teacher in the US. Chaperoned a school trip to Canada. We got to the border and realized one of the girls didn't have her passport.

Definitely the worst field trip experience I've had!

As an aside, as a teacher, I can't believe some of the trips in this thread even got approved!!


I Need Air

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To a not air conditioned community center gyms basketball court to celebrate being in the middle of middle school. Some of the longest 3 hours ever.